From Baltimore to Morgantown: Daxter Miles’ Tattoos Tell His Tale

The number 240 is written in ink on Daxter Miles' right forearm. It is one of many tattoos that line his arms, each with a different reason to be permanently displayed on his skin.

“My tattoos mean a lot to me,” Miles said this week, scanning the various words, numbers and images. “A lot of people will be like, man, you've got a lot of tattoos, but they don't really get close and look at them and see what they mean.”

It starts with that number, 240 Bond St., the address where Miles grew up in East Baltimore City. Now a freshman guard for the West Virginia University basketball team, the road to Morgantown began back at 240.

This wasn't the address behind a white picket fence, but rather his place in the projects.

“I'm from East Baltimore City,” Miles said with more than a hint of pride. “I'm from the trenches. I'm from the real deal where you hear the ‘fireworks,' but they're not fireworks.”

via From Baltimore to Morgantown: Daxter Miles’ Tattoos Tell His Tal – WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News – Mountaineer Sports.

WV MetroNews – Foward Ahmad, point guard Bolden join WVU as early signings

West Virginia University announced the early signings of forward Esa Ahmad and point guard James “Beetle” Bolden on Wednesday.

Ahmad, a 6-foot-8, 220-pound forward from Shaker Heights, Ohio, is ranked No. 43 in the class of 2015 by ESPN.com and No. 70 by Rivals.com. He averaged 26.4 points, 11.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.0 blocks per game as a junior and chose the Mountaineers over Ohio State, Indiana, Cincinnati, Wisconsin and a host of other power-conference programs.

“I do not know if we could have signed a better player to fill our needs,” said Huggins. “With us losing Juwan (Staten) next year, we needed to have someone who can bounce the ball and make plays. Esa is not only very good at creating scoring opportunities for himself but also at creating opportunities for his teammates. Our guys will enjoy playing with him because he is very adept at delivering the ball to open people.”

via WV MetroNews – Foward Ahmad, point guard Bolden join WVU as early signings.

WV MetroNews – Despite back-to-back losses, ‘improvement’ still a buzzword at WVU

By achieving bowl-eligibility, Dana Holgorsen has mitigated the hot-seat speculation that followed last season’s 4-8 disaster.

Now his mission is steering West Virginia out of a two-game losing skid and into a strong finish.

The Mountaineers (6-4, 4-3 Big 12) close the regular season with games against No. 13 Kansas State and Iowa State, providing a chance to play their way up or down the bowl food chain.

While the 33-16 loss to Texas was still fresh Tuesday—and still unacceptable from standpoints of effort and execution—West Virginia already has surpassed its admittedly dire preseason projections. (Included among those was the now-infamous Oliver Luck assertion that a 4-8 repeat could represent improvement based on WVU facing a tough schedule.)

Holgorsen said he wasn’t surprised to see West Virginia, which spent three weeks in the AP top 25, become relevant again.

via WV MetroNews – Despite back-to-back losses, ‘improvement’ still a buzzword at WVU.

No. 3 Seed WVU Opens NCAA vs. Georgetown – WVU Athletics

The No. 8-ranked and 2014 Big 12 Conference regular-season and tournament champion West Virginia University women’s soccer team earned a No. 3 seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament and will play host to Georgetown in the opening round on Saturday, Nov. 15, at 4 p.m., at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium.

The Mountaineers advance to the NCAA Tournament for the 15th straight season, the eighth-longest active streak in the nation. WVU advanced as far as the Elite Eight in 2007.

Today’s seeding is the team’s first since earning a No. 3 seed for the 2010 NCAA Tournament. The Mountaineers advanced to the NCAA Round of 16 that year and fell, 4-0, at Boston College on Nov. 19, 2010.

“As excited as we were to win the Big 12 Championship, I think this team is ready to make a run in the NCAA Tournament,” said Mountaineer coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “We’re going to put the Big 12 (title) on a shelf and put all our energy toward getting ready for the NCAA Tournament. We’re absolutely excited.”

via No. 3 Seed WVU Opens NCAA vs. Georgetown – WVU Athletics.

WATCH: WVU Women’s Soccer Earns No. 3 Seed, Prepares for Georgetown

The 8th-ranked West Virginia Women's Soccer team held a watch party on Monday evening in anticipation for the NCAA Tournament Selection Show.

The Mountaineers were hoping for a 2-seed, but ended up receiving a 3-seed. It was announced that the Mountaineers will take on a familiar opponent: The Georgetown Hoyas.

Georgetown visited WVU earlier in the season, playing to a 1-1 tie in a game that needed double-overtime.

via WATCH: WVU Women's Soccer Earns No. 3 Seed, Prepares for Georget – WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News – Mountaineer Sports.

Charleston Daily Mail | WVU FOOTBALL: K-State hit hard by TCU loss too

Within a conference where the schools compete for a lot of the same high school and junior college stars, most of the offenses are similar and many of the staffs have a coach who spent time on a sideline somewhere else in the league, these two seem as dissimilar as is possible inside the Big 12.

Bill Snyder is the 75-year-old coach at Kansas State. Dana Holgorsen is the 43-year-old coach at West Virginia. The 2005 season was Holgorsen’s first as an offensive coordinator at Texas Tech and the last for Snyder before he’d retire, though that only lasted three years.

Snyder’s college coaching career started in Texas and took off in Iowa. He was with Hayden Fry at North Texas and then spent 10 seasons as Fry’s offensive coordinator at Iowa. Holgorsen was born in Iowa and played at two colleges in the state, but his career exploded with Mike Leach at Texas Tech and Kevin Sumlin at Houston.

Both were offensive coaches earlier in their careers, but Holgorsen passed out of frenetic spreads and Snyder liked powerful formations and traditional ideas.

via Charleston Daily Mail | WVU FOOTBALL: K-State hit hard by TCU loss too.

The Charleston Gazette | WVU, K-State licking wounds

West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen and Kansas State’s Bill Snyder have a lot in common this week.

They both face the prospect of trying to regroup teams that just suffered rather demoralizing losses in time to face each other in 10 days.

Both admit it’s a challenge, but it’s not as if these are uncharted waters.

“I think kids are a little bit more resilient than you think they are,’’ Holgorsen said Monday. “I think coaches take losses harder than players do at times.’’

For Holgorsen, the task is overcoming Saturday’s 33-16 loss at Texas, a defeat that knocked the Mountaineers (6-4, 4-3 Big 12) out of the Top 25 and put a damper on what had been a season in which WVU had previously lost only to top-10 teams.

Kansas State (7-2, 5-1) suffered no less a crushing defeat, although the ramifications were far different. The Wildcats will remain in the Top 25 when the College Football Playoff rankings are released tonight (they are No. 13 in both the media and coaches’ polls), but hopes of a New Year’s Six bowl and perhaps even a playoff spot disappeared in a 41-20 loss at the hands of TCU.

Both teams are off this week and then will meet a week from Thursday at Mountaineer Field (7 p.m., Fox Sports 1) in WVU’s final home game of the season.

via The Charleston Gazette | WVU, K-State licking wounds.

The Charleston Gazette | TCU, Baylor clear Big 12 front-runners for playoff

West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen starting preparing for Baylor when the Bears were coming off a wild comeback win over TCU.

Two weeks after that, he flipped the script and examined that game while prepping his Mountaineers to play the Horned Frogs.

Which one is better?

“I’d hate to have to choose between them, so good luck to the [playoff] committee,” Holgorsen said Monday. “We’ve played a lot of good football teams, and those two are as good as I’ve seen. If they continue to win in the Big 12 and finish 11-1, then they should be in the top four. That’s for certain.”

No. 5 TCU and No. 6 Baylor (both 8-1 overall, 5-1 Big 12) are the clear front-runners if the Big 12 is going to grab one of the spots in the new four-team playoff.

via The Charleston Gazette | TCU, Baylor clear Big 12 front-runners for playoff.

Schwindel Named Athlete of the Week – WVU Athletics

After scoring the game-winner in the No. 8-ranked Mountaineers’ title-clinching 1-0 win over Oklahoma at the Big 12 Soccer Championship on Nov. 9, senior forward Kate Schwindel of the women’s soccer team has been named the WVU Student-Athlete of the Week.

A Livingston, New Jersey, native, Schwindel scored her goal in the 13th minute, her first score at a Big 12 Championship and her seventh goal of the season. She finished with a game-high three shots on-frame. 

Schwindel now shows 33 career goals and is tied with Blake Miller (2008-11) for No. 6 on the Mountaineers’ all-time list. 

via Schwindel Named Athlete of the Week – WVU Athletics.

Wearing the Jersey: Mario Alford – WVU Athletics

Senior wide receiver Mario Alford sees his speed as an asset on the football field. Watch his story on this week's Wearing the Jersey presented by Panhandle Cleaning and Restoration. 

via Wearing the Jersey: Mario Alford – WVU Athletics.

Big 12 Teleconference: Holgorsen Shifts Attention to Bye Week

WVU Head Football Coach Dana Holgorsen spoke during the weekly Big 12 Teleconference on Monday morning. Among other things, Holgorsen spoke briefly about the loss at Texas over the weekend, while previewing the plans for the upcoming bye week.

Below is the dialogue between Holgorsen and the media during the call.

via Big 12 Teleconference: Holgorsen Shifts Attention to Bye Week – WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News – Mountaineer Sports.

WV MetroNews – Talking letdowns, Dillon and bowl prospects as WVU enters bye week

That subdued first-half performance at Texas? West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen didn’t see it coming.

He didn’t notice signs of lethargy—not during the week of practice or during Saturday’s sunup to the game—and presumed the Mountaineers would re-inflate after the TCU loss. Then Texas jumped ahead 24-3.

“I don’t know of a magic formula to see in pregame whether your guys are on par or not,” Holgorsen said Monday. “It looked to me like they looked the same as they had the previous nine games, so I don’t know.

“I thought our guys would be excited about being able to play in a venue like the University of Texas, (but) we didn’t have the pop that we had in most of the other games.”

via WV MetroNews – Talking letdowns, Dillon and bowl prospects as WVU enters bye week.

WV MetroNews – NAPA Auto Parts Gold & Blue Now: Tuesday, Nov. 11

In this edition of the NAPA Auto Parts Gold and Blue Now, Dana Holgorsen talks about the bye week coming at an opportune time, with a Thursday night game on the horizon against K-State looming large.

via WV MetroNews – NAPA Auto Parts Gold & Blue Now: Tuesday, Nov. 11.

Charleston Daily Mail | WVU FOOTBALL: Mountaineers made the wrong moves at the wrong times

Clint Trickett prefers to put interceptions behind him as fast as possible during a game, but Saturday saw one of the rare and nearly fruitful exceptions.

“The kid completely jumped the route and made a hell of a play,” the West Virginia quarterback said.

The Mountaineers were holding on late in the first half and caught a break when the Longhorns finally did something wrong and missed a 46-yard field goal. Trickett led the offense onto the field to start at its 28-yard line with 2:18 remaining in the first half. He took the snap and quickly threw to the right to Kevin White, who’d already caught six passes — as many as he had the previous two games.

Cornerback Quandre Diggs read Trickett the whole time and stepped in front of White to pick off the pass at the 36.

“He put all his eggs in one basket,” Trickett said.

via Charleston Daily Mail | WVU FOOTBALL: Mountaineers made the wrong moves at the wrong times.

The Charleston Gazette | Mountaineer mistakes carried into 2nd half vs. Texas

Dana Holgorsen called the first half of West Virginia’s loss to Texas Saturday “a good old-fashioned butt kicking.’’ He could have used the same narrative for the entire game had he chosen to do so.

Yes, the Mountaineers played better in the second half, actually winning it on the scoreboard 13-9. And it’s true, the first half — during which Texas bolted out to a 24-3 lead — was abysmal.

But in truth there were probably more critical mistakes made over the course of the final two quarters than in the first two. The only difference was that the Longhorns didn’t always capitalize.

“We have to give our guys a little bit of credit for at least going out there in the second half and competing,’’ Holgorsen said after the 33-16 loss that will reduce the Mountaineers to the ranks of the unranked. “I don’t think we competed very hard in the first half, but at least we did in the second half.’’

Competed, yes. Excelled, no.

via The Charleston Gazette | Mountaineer mistakes carried into 2nd half vs. Texas.

Back-to-Back Championships! – WVU Athletics

A goal in the 13th minute off the foot of senior captain Kate Schwindel clinched the second straight Big 12 Soccer Championship title for the No. 8-ranked West Virginia University women’s soccer team, as the squad defeated sixth-seeded Oklahoma 1-0 this evening at Swope Soccer Village.

The title is the Mountaineers’ fifth conference championship title and fourth in five years. WVU (16-2-3, 7-0-1), the three-time reigning Big 12 regular-season champions, have now won five Big 12 titles in three seasons. The Mountaineers’ senior class – Schwindel, Jess Crowder, Ali Connelly and Katie Osterman – will leave Morgantown with seven conference titles.

WVU has won 13 conference titles since 2002.

“It is an unbelievable feeling to be a part of this team and to experience this win with everyone,” said three-time reigning Big 12 Coach of the Year Nikki Izzo-Brown. “I’m especially happy that Kate got that game-winner. I’m so proud of this team.”

With the win, WVU earns the Big 12 Conference’s automatic bid to the 2014 NCAA Tournament, ensuring the Mountaineers’ 15th straight appearance.

via Back-to-Back Championships! – WVU Athletics.

Wearing the Jersey: Ziva Dvorsak – WVU Athletics

This week's Wearing the Jersey profiles West Virginia University senior shooter Ziva Dvorsak, presented by WVU Healthcare.

via Wearing the Jersey: Ziva Dvorsak – WVU Athletics.

WATCH: WVU Men’s Basketball Players React to 109-60 Win in Exhibition

With seven new faces making their debut inside the WVU Coliseum on Sunday evening, the West Virginia men's basketball team saw six different players score in double-figures en route to a 109-60 win over Shepherd in exhibition play.

One of the newcomers, Jaysean Paige, led the team with 13 points. Sophomore forward Devin Williams recorded a double-double, 11 points and 14 rebounds in the win on Sunday.

Senior point guard and Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year, Juwan Staten, did not start the game. Huggins noted a few weeks back that Staten had recently returned from a minor injury suffered during practice and preseason workouts. Staten is now back to full strength, but came off the bench on Sunday for precautionary reasons. Instead, Huggins started fellow senior point guard Gary Browne.

Below are a variety of interviews with WVU players following Sunday's victory over Shepherd.

via WATCH: WVU Men's Basketball Players React to 109-60 Win in Exhib – WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News – Mountaineer Sports.

WV MetroNews – Huggins’ postgame reaction after exhibition romp

Coach Bob Huggins shares his thoughts on West Virginia’s 109-60 exhibition win over Shepherd.

via WV MetroNews – Huggins’ postgame reaction after exhibition romp.

WV MetroNews – Full-court press on display as WVU crushes Shepherd in exhibition

Many new faces made their West Virginia debuts Sunday as the Mountaineers pressed and plundered their way to a 109-60 exhibition win over Shepherd.

West Virginia worked on its full-court press throughout the game, finishing with 43 points off 27 turnovers, which included 20 steals.

“The key is that you put pressure on the ball and you have an opportunity to create a turnover the length of the floor instead of just in the half-court,” said West Virginia coach Bob Huggins. “I think the cumulative effect is that it wears people down. It’ll wear us down too, but hopefully we’ll have enough guys that we can survive that.”

via WV MetroNews – Full-court press on display as WVU crushes Shepherd in exhibition.